Commercial Recycling

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California Commercial Recycling Law | Assembly Bill (AB) 341 | A Closer Look

In response to the Statewide commercial recycling law, the City of Santa Maria Utilities Department has implemented a commercial recycling program for businesses and multi-family complexes in the City. This program is aimed at businesses and multi-family units that currently do not have a recycling service and generate four or more cubic yards of refuse each week. Beginning in July 2012, the City sent out recycling literature to local business communities and multi-dwelling properties in an effort to build public awareness about the program.


What is AB 341?

Assembly Bill (AB) 341 is legislation that took effect on July 1, 2012. Under this law, businesses generating four or more cubic yards of refuse each week are required to recycle. The purpose of the law is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and conserve landfill capacity. According to the 2008 Statewide Waste Characterization tables of data, the commercial sector generates 67 percent of California’s overall disposed waste stream and about 8 percent is from multi-family residential housing.

Which businesses are required to comply?

  • Commercial establishments meeting the weekly four or more cubic yards of generated refuse include, but are not limited to, private or public businesses, profit or non-profit organizations, industrial facilities, universities, community colleges, schools, school districts, airports and retail malls.
  • Multi-family dwellings include apartment properties, condominiums, townhomes and mobile home parks of five units or more.

What are the benefits?

It’s simple and may save you money. The commercial recycling program is designed to offer a simple and affordable recycling solution for businesses. Recyclables from businesses will be serviced one to five times per week with an option to select two-, three-or four-yard recycling containers. This program may also provide a cost savings opportunity for businesses to reduce their refuse bill. For example, businesses that are serviced more than once a week could reduce their pick up frequency by diverting recyclable products away from trash containers. Similarly, businesses that have a four-cubic-yard container could reduce their container size to a three-cubic-yard container.

Legislation AB 341 will help the City of Santa Maria move forward from landfill disposing to waste reduction and recycling by mandating each jurisdiction to achieve a 75 percent diversion rate by the year 2020. By participating in a commercial recycling program, these efforts will help move the City toward its 2020 goal. Please help the City achieve the mandated 75 percent diversion goal and benefit the environment for our community.

How do I get started?

It’s easy to get started. To schedule commercial recycling service at your business or obtain additional information on our commercial recycling program, please contact the Utilities Department at (805) 925-0951 ext. 7270.


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